Into the Wild

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Like I said before, our Florida vacation was a good mix of pretending we were rich and famous on 5th avenue and exploring the real Florida. You can only admire expensive home decor and clothing shops from the sidewalk for so long. So we headed to the Everglades to get a taste of wildlife. We’ve actually been to the Everglades before, and even camped! But that was on the southside. This time we figured we’d stick semi-close to Naples, you know, so we could get back to the awesome Naples Pier in time for a breath-taking sunset!

Everglades City is a small town near the Gulf Shore Visitor Center entrance to the Everglades. We had wanted to go kayaking, but the wind was strong due to a cold front which had passed through the day before, and the clouds hadn’t quite left yet either. Therefore, it was chilly. Instead, we settled for a boat tour, which ended up being pretty fun, despite still being very cold. Amusing crew and lots to see. Including dolphins! We only saw one at a time, as they would ride the current of the boat. It was adorable. I love dolphins, almost as much as I love pelicans.

After our boat tour, we did some hiking on short trails that jut out from Tamiami Trail – a road which connects Tampa and Miami through the Everglades. For lunch, we decided we’d be completely nuts if we skipped out on Joanie’s Blue Crab Cafe. We were sort of right. It was definitely an experience. From the interesting way of running the joint to the odd family of motorcyclists that had stopped for a beer. They kept us entertained while waiting for our food. The food wasn’t horrible, but if you do happen to stop at Joanie’s Blue Crab Cafe and order the famous Blue Crab as a meal, first find out how to eat one. We barely got any crab meat out of ours and it likely is because we are Minnesotans without a clue. Oh well, it was still an experience to try out Alligator nuggets!

Ok, I promise only ONE more Florida post. I think.